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20 February 2003, 12:41 pm
Brits Lead Warm Up
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Mnarani Club

Fireball World Championship
Kilifi

International Week, the warm up to the Safaricom World Fireball Sailing Championships, got underway on Tuesday, in Kifili, Kenya, with a brisk breeze blowing over a sparkling sea, and a school of dolphins playing around the Committee boat.

Six races have been scheduled for International Week before the World Championship begin on Saturday. In the first two races on Tuesday the British boats established a firm lead, with Howarth / Townend taking first place twice and Wade / Wagstaff taking second place twice.

The second day produced equally fine sailing conditions, with slightly lighter wind in the 3rd race picking up more strongly for the 4th. Two boats (skippered by Vincent Horey and Alex Bale) were over the line at the start of the 3rd and were disqualified for not returning to recross the start line. Malcolm Davies and crew Fiona Jump established a commanding lead and never looked back, winning the 3rd race easily. Horey and Bale made no mistakes in the 4th race and came in the winner, followed in by Howarth and Townend.

The Kenya boats were led by John Trundell and Peter Hime who secured 13th and 10th places in the first two races and then on the Wednesday an excellent 5th in the third race. A fine performance was given by young Kenyans Omar Mbithi and Steve Ogada who improved from 26th in the first race to 18th in the 3rd - it would seem these young men are on the way up!

The Safaricom World Fireball Sailing Championships will be the first ever World Championship event to be held in Kenya. The Championship will begin with an opening ceremony at the Mnarani Club on Friday 21 February and the action on the water starting on Saturday. 10 races are scheduled with lay days on Monday and Thursday and the final day's racing taking place on Friday 28 February.

Top 10 Results after 4 races:

Race 1 Race 2 Race 3 Race 4 Total Points Position
GBR 14708 Chips Howarth/Vyv Townend 1 1 2 2 6 1
GBR 14809 Dave Wade/Richard Wagstaff 2 2 4 3 11 2
GBR 14783 Paul Cullen/Gavin Tillson 5 4 3 4 16 3
IRL 14816 Shane McCarthy/Phil McCusker 6 7 8 5 26 4
GBR 13945 Malcolm Davies/Fiona Jump 7 8 1 13 29 5
GBR 14778 Jeremy Davy/Norman Byrd 8 3 10 10 31 6
GBR 14556 Andy Pearce/Rachel Keeling 9 12 9 6 36 7
GBR 14789 Penny Gibbs/Ian Gibbs 16 6 6 9 37 8
GBR 14770 Vincent Horey/Jim Turner 3 5 32 1 41 9
KEN 14534 John Trundell/Peter Hime 13 10 5 14 42 10
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